Overcoming The Stereotypical Day

October 8, 2013

For most of us in business we operate a Monday to Friday working week and each individual day has its own character and some even have nicknames! In my experience the difference between great and average workers at any level is their attitude to each day!

For example Monday, to some it is simply ‘moan day’ and these people spend the entire morning lamenting the weekend past and the fact they have 5 days of work until the next one! Great people in comparison see Monday as a clean slate, virgin snow that they are treading for the first time. These people are like sprinters that are ready on their blocks waiting for the starting pistol to fire.

The next day that really divides opinion is Wednesday or as it is now colloquially known ‘hump day’. It signifies to the average that the middle of the week has been reached and that it’s all downhill from here! For the effective worker Wednesday is just a gentle reminder that their task list is running out of week to complete it. They take time on Wednesday afternoon to re-evaluate their priorities to ensure the most important tasks are not sacrificed in favour of lesser ones.

When it comes to black and white attitudes however Friday is by far the King of them all. Friday has its own acronym, ‘POETS’ day which for anyone that hasn’t heard it stands for “P**s Off Early Tomorrow’s Saturday”. It goes without saying that people with this attitude rarely put in 100% effort on a Friday! It is clear that workers are divided into two camps, those that use Friday to really earn their weekend off, and those that use Friday to simply prepare for theirs.

I am sure that some people using the terms above are hardworking and effective members of their teams but as leaders and managers it is surely our responsibility to ensure ALL our staff are effective at all times. Here are my top tips for counteracting the daily stereotypes:

Monday

Set an example yourself and encourage all your managers/supervisors to do the same. Stop the moans and negative talk in its tracks and replace them with positive energy.

Tuesday

Did you know that Tuesday is named after Tir (or Tyw), Tyw’s Day. He was the Norse God of single combat, victory and heroic glory!  Might be worth mentioning this to aid motivation.

Wednesday

Eliminate ‘hump day’ from the vocabulary in your business and replace it with a feeling that Wednesday is a great day! It’s half time in the working week and a chance to assess your first half performance. You may need to refocus or reassess you task list for the second half.

Thursday

Thursday is also named after a Norse God, Thor. Thor was the hammer wielding god of storms lighting and the protection of mankind. Sounds more exciting than just ‘Thursday’.

Friday

As Friday is well known as POETS day, managers often prepare a Friday morning speech or email reminding people of the importance of working right through until 5pm. For some this has little effect as they have the reputation for sneaking off early themselves ‘to work from home’!

In some organisations POETS day is celebrated by not having to wear business dress. In my view this casual attire just fosters casual attitude and I am not a supporter.

So there you have it, my guide to the working week and how to combat the stereotypical attitudes workers have for each one. Do you agree with me or am I just a grumpy old man?

Many thanks

Stuart Allen

Trainer & Consultant at MTD Training

http://www.management-training-development.com

(Image by Mr Lightman at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)